6 great tips on increasing parent engagement in your Autism Unit PLUS a FREE Editable Newsletter Template!

Parent Engagement in Autism Units

Parent Engagement in Autism Units

As teachers in self contained classes or Autism Units, we are tasked with being care takes, educators, advocates, surrogates, and darn near family for each student we work with. Sometimes we can start to forget that fostering a friendly relationship with parents is also part of the job. Parent engagement in Autism units is important. So how can you do those little things that help parents feel involved, help you grow a stronger relationship, and provide moms and dads with a full experience as the parent of a school-aged kid.

 Increasing Parent Engagement in YOUR Autism Unit

There are so many working parts in a self contained or Autism Unit. See what you can do to survive and thrive in a self contained classroom!

Survive and Thrive in a Self Contained Classroom

Survive and Thrive in a Self Contained Classroom

When I walked into my first LIFE Skills classroom I was teaching so many different leveled students so many subjects (seemingly at the same time) I really didn’t know where to start. Like a lot of new teachers, I thought I could teach in self contained like I taught before- whole groups where I “performed” and called students to perform back on cue. Problem is self contained does NOT work that way. When you ask for a performance, you’ll likely get something you did not anticipate. I was in the classroom with non-responsive students, high functioning Autistic students, emotionally disabled students with a bevy of behavior problems, and students with Down Syndrome and varying levels of functioning depending on the task. I had a hard time planning lessons. After much trial and error, I found that the following things were absolutely necessary to survive and thrive in a self contained classroom.

There are so many working parts in a self contained or Autism Unit. See what you can do to survive and thrive in a self contained classroom!

Adapted Books in Autism Units

Wanting to add more and meaningful activities to your classroom?

Have you tried adapted books?

Learn more about using adapted books in Autism Units!

Using Adapted Books in Autism Units

I love adapted books. LOVE! They are one of my favorite tools in Autism classrooms. When it comes to working on basic skills, advanced concepts, content area ideas, or even personal information, adapted books are a great way to effectively target specific skills in a way that is engaging for students.

Using adapted books in Autism Units. How and Why PLUS get some FREE!

Are you looking for a cheap and easy alternative to laminating pouches? We’ve got 5 laminating hacks for teachers plus a bonus you can find in your kitchen!

Laminating Hacks for Teachers

Are you looking for a cheap and easy alternative to laminating pouches? We’ve got 5 laminating hacks for teachers plus a bonus you can find in your kitchen!

Are you looking for a cheap and easy alternative to laminating pouches? We’ve got 5 laminating hacks for teachers plus a bonus you can find in your kitchen!

Laminating Hacks for Teachers

It was horrifying. I looked everywhere. I looked in all my drawers, my supply closet, and my secret stash hiding spot- there were no laminating sheets anywhere. I am a member of Amazon Prime, so I sat down to log on and order more. I figured I could wait the two days. But, man, it’s hard to be without.

 

I decided to brainstorm and try some standard laminator and laminating sheet alternatives and I must say, I liked a couple of these more than the old sheet way! Either way, I know you are a laminating-addict… we need to be with our students. Our materials are strategically modified and mean to be reusable, but are not always treated with the best of care (read: put in mouths, thrown, ripped, and more).

 

Try these alternatives and see what you think… I can tell you they really work!

6 Mistakes Autism Unit Teachers and Paras Make

6 Mistakes Autism Unit Teachers and Paras Make…

Do you do any of these? STOP!

6 Mistakes Teacher in Autism Units Make from NoodleNook1

Working with students in self-contained settings or those with severe or multiple disabilities is hard, but I see many people in the classroom make these same mistakes over and over without really thinking there are any consequences. If you stop these 6 mistakes, your students will be the better for it- I promise!

Autism Classroom Setup

Autism Classroom Setup: 10 Things Every Autism Classroom Teacher Needs from Amazon

The other day I was walking in Wal-Mart and I was so sad to see back to school stuff! Fourth of July picnic and party supplies are not even on final clearance yet… why are they reminding me that school will be back in session before I can even toast my buns on the grill and down my summer adult beverage.

The one thing that does satisfy my summer relaxation and obsession with school perfection is shopping for school supplies. I have even taken to letting my kids order their school stuff on Amazon as opposed to schlep the whole crew to the store and fight the impulse buys and the marker boxes that are not exactly what was on the back to school list. They like it and with my Amazon Prime subscription, it comes to my house shipping-free and hassle-free.

This year is the first time I will order my back to school essentials from Amazon as well. With all the browsing and price comparison, I thought I’d share my order top 10 so you can see what I think are essentials for every teacher in Autism Units or Self-Contained settings.

Autism Classroom Setup: These are the 10 things every Autism Classroom Teacher Needs from Amazon. Yeah, you’ll love number 11!

6 Real and actionable ways to start the year off right in Autism units or self-contained.

Start the Year Off Right

6 Ways to Start the Year off Right When Teaching Students With Multiple Disabilities

It seems like summer just started, but the awesomest of you are already thinking about school starting- you’re mentally planning, curating materials, and your inner Rock Star teacher is rejuvenating. I’m teaching summer school for the severely disabled this year and some of my aides will be starting as teachers in the fall. The one question they really want to know is what they can do right to start the year off right.

With that in mind, here is a list of 6 ways to start the year off right when teaching LIFE Skills/PMLD.

Start Year Off Right in Self Contained Autism Units

Seeing regression in students with significant disabilities is heartbreaking… but how do you keep them engaged and learning over the summer? Here are the 3 best websites to stop summer regression!

Best Websites to Stop Summer Regression

Seeing regression in students with significant disabilities is heartbreaking… but how do you keep them engaged and learning over the summer? Here are the 3 best websites to stop summer regression!

Seeing regression in students with significant disabilities is heartbreaking… but how do you keep them engaged and learning over the summer? Here are the 3 best websites to stop summer regression!

Best Websites to Stop Summer Regression

The countdowns are posted in classrooms. Teachers are dreaming of days with no alarm clocks. Students are fantasizing about the pool, late bedtimes, and summer fun.

Yes, summer is coming.

Problem with students who have significant disabilities is that summer often means regression and when students take so long to recoup that summer slide, isn’t our responsibility to do something?

No worries. I have 3 great websites that are FREE, FUN, and EASY to assign as the teacher as well as TRACK DATA!

Yeah. It’s all that, so read on!